Caught the final Central Park performance of this play yesterday, and was thoroughly impressed. The author, Kirk Wood Bromley, wanted to take what Shakespeare did with English history and apply it to American history. The play was done in blank verse with a very Shakespearean history structure to it. High drama scenes of war and politics were juxtoposed against low comedic scenes involving a ragtag band of minutemen. George Washington was the central political figure who was having trouble filling his own britches, while the more qualified Benedick Arnold seeks his own promotion over Washington and must deal with his temptation to commit conspiracy and, ultimately, to sell out to the other side.
Obviously, it could never be Shakespeare, but there were many moments where it came close. Though there were things I would have changed about it, the play often felt like it was just shy of being a work of true genius, and I'd like to see or read it again.
"Sometimes a thousand twangling instruments will hum about mine ears; and sometimes voices, that, if I then had wak'd after long sleep, will make me sleep again; and then, in dreaming, the clouds methought would open and show riches ready to drop upon me, that, when I wak'd, I cried to dream again"